Hearing Loss

You may feel like you are alone in dealing with yours or a loved one’s hearing loss, but 2 in 5 Canadian adults between the ages of 20 and 79 have some level of hearing loss. That’s almost half of everyone you may see on any given day.

Hearing loss is often permanent, and, like aches and pains, it is most often related to growing older. At the same time, age is far from the only cause of hearing loss. Prolonged exposure to loud noise, an accident, the side effects of medication, ear wax build-up and even genetics can lead to hearing loss. There are two main types of hearing loss, conductive and sensorineural, along with a third type which is simply a combination of the two.

Conductive Hearing Loss

Conductive hearing loss is similar to the idea of ear wax build-up. If you have too much ear wax build-up, it creates a blockage that prevents sound vibrations from reaching your inner ear. A perforated ear drum, fluid in the middle ear, and damage to the bones of the middle ear can also cause conductive hearing loss.

Some forms of this, such as wax build-up or fluid, can be treated and cured, others cannot.

Sensorineural Hearing Loss

Sensorineural hearing loss, on the other hand, deals with damage to the inner ear, which prevents sound from properly reaching your auditory nerve and being translated by your brain. This type of hearing loss is most often associated with growing older, the prolonged exposure to dangerous noise levels, or both. This form of hearing loss is usually permanent.

Combined Hearing Loss

Since the two types of hearing loss deal with different parts of the ear, they can both occur at the same time. For instance, a man retiring from working in a factory for 30 years may not hear as well as he used to, but if he has ear wax build-up, his hearing will be much worse. Whether or not this form of hearing loss is permanent depends on the nature of the two types of hearing loss.

Book Your No Obligation, Free Hearing Test Today

A professional hearing test with a trusted hearing healthcare provider is the most efficient and reliable way to determine the type and degree of hearing loss you or a loved one is experiencing.

Phonak field Study News, June 2016